A fellow blogger Susan Evans wrote a very interesting post called Virtual or Real (Part 1).
It talked to my heart as a mother. It made me think about being a mother. It made me think about my son, our relationship, our relationship with God. And what all this means. At once I felt I had to answer her.
Just a few days ago I was looking at pictures of my son when he was little. He's 11 years old now, a big boy. And I missed that little boy who would come to sit on my lap and I could pick up and carry on my arms. I miss him so much.
I have my son still, but the relationship changes all the time. And I don't want to miss the important moments. Like yesterday watching a movie together while we ate pizza. Or reading him when he goes to bed.
Just a few days ago he sighed while he was laying in the bed, hugged me and told me that he's so glad I'm there for him all the time.
I felt a queer mixed sensation. I know I try to be there, but there are so many moments I feel guilty that I spend with the computer or at work and I'm not there for him.
I struggle with this daily. I try to find moments to show that all my attention is to him. To teach him about God and God's love, by showing him, my love, mirroring the love God has with the love I have for him.
And when he talks about his love for God, how he will never forget or deny God, it makes me feel so proud of him. And scared. Because I know how hard the world can be.
I find Susan's honesty encouraging and I respect her, as a mother and a person, even more because of it.
There are moments when my son asks me something while I'm on the computer and I answer something half intelligible. Sometimes he repeats what he's saying, sometimes he waits, other times he just gives up. And it breaks my heart when I think about it later on.
There are times when my son gets angry and says: You only care about the computer. Why don't you spend time with ME?
I think it's excellent that he can express his worries and anger. But it still breaks my heart.
But it also makes me a better mother because it makes me think about my choices and he challenges me to put him first and everything else I do second.
The good thing is that I have had some opportunities to take him with me to my work. We have visited indigenous communities, he has seen how the people there live, the schools they go to. And I think it will help him to see the world in quite a different way.
But it still broke my heart when he told me that he had thought that I didn't really work but only spend time on the computer. I guess since my office is at home, that is what he sees. His mother at the computer, just spending time when she could be with him.
A heartbreaking situation that many mothers must face today.
My answer to it.
Stop working when he talks to me. I know, it kills the flow. It takes ages to remember what I was doing and find the thread of thought I was following. But it also shows that I care, that I put him on the first spot.
Write when he's at school, asleep, with his friends, find moments when he isn't around to write. And when I have to write when the work absolutely takes me away from him, explain it to him. He is big, he's nine years old, he understands a lot of things.
And like I said before, make him part of the work. Show him what I do. Make him understand why it is so important to me.
I must tell these things have improved our relationship immensely. But there is still a lot to do. And I still keep praying and seeking God to give me understanding how to show more love to my son. How to show God's love and care to my son.
"Children are not casual guests in our home. They have been loaned to us temporarily for the purpose of loving them and instilling a foundation of values on which their future lives will be built."